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Monthly Archives: November 2012

 

 

An analysis of the feedback received by CBSE about CCE in 2010 via an online survey resulted in a few insights. It helped affirm the CBSE chairman’s concerns about the myths that surround CCE.

A quarter of the respondents feel that CCE does not benefit students in any manner.

30% of the respondents feel that CCE will take away emphasis from academics and give more importance to co-curricular activities.

Almost half the respondents feel that there are problems in the way the CCE system is being implemented at the school level.

Almost a quarter of the respondents think that Formative Assessment (Assessing FOR Learning rather than Assessing OF Learning) is overloading students and parents. This should not be the case ideally, as formative assessment is a method to aid in the learning process.

IF the CCE system is the right way to go, there seems to be an issue in terms of its understanding & implementation. The later part of the report lists a few common myths associated to CCE & attempts to correct them. Similarly, CCE encourages Formative Assessment, which has been a successful method used in schools all across the world, but has gathered negative feedback in terms of work pressure on students and parents.

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Mr. Vineet Joshi, Chairman, CBSE
Photo coutresy – India Today

I had the opportunity to meet Mr. Vineet Joshi, the current chairman of CBSE. The Continuous & Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) system has been put into place during his tenure. I was curious to know if there were impact assessment studies done by the CBSE, and what their plans were on bridging the gaps that are evident with the implementation of the system presently.

1. To create demand and understanding amongst parents, CBSE has come up with a system of Parent Advocates, who are given basic training in the CCE methodology by the CBSE, so that they can keep a check on the school’s methods of teaching and implementation of CCE.

2. A Maintenance & Mentoring program was initiated in which a principal of a particular school acted as a mentor for a cluster of schools to make sure good practices were followed in their cluster. These principals are given specially designed tools by the CBSE to monitor progress of schools.

3. To make sure that students do not suffer due to biased teachers, there is a system of Evidence of Assessment in which 15 papers of students ranking top, middle and bottom in the school results are collected and examined by experts, and feedback is given to the school regarding evaluation practices.

4. Raw data on performance of students from schools across the country has just been collected for the years 2006-12. It is now being cleaned and formatted for analysis. This would provide indicators on the success of CCE. Although, the indicators used to analyze this data would be dicey, as the parameters on which success is measured are subjective in nature.

5. Intensive teacher training workshops are being held across the country to train the teachers in the CCE methodology of teaching as well as assessment. These workshops are often conducted by private agencies to cater to the huge numbers spread across the country.

6. There has been an attempt to brand CCE in order to create awareness about it, and capture the mindspace of parents, so that there is constant demand for a fair and effective system.

One of the major concerns that Mr. Joshi pointed out was how gravely CCE is misunderstood by teachers, schools, students and parents. There is a common myth that CCE means frequent testing, and that assessment means correcting a huge number of papers week after week. He was of the opinion that assessment has to be inclusive of teaching, and an in-classroom activity.

It seems to me that it is important to understand what the actual mandate of the CCE is, and to compare it with what is being implemented in schools, and what parents and students make of it.

I was given a report which summarizes a mass survey conducted by the CBSE after one year of implementation of the CCE. Analysis of the report shall follow next.

_ Where does the pressure on the child to perform come from? How does the competitive mental model set in? What are the causes? What are the effects of competition on education?

_ What is the impact assessment of the new CCE system put in place by CBSE? Are students able to cope up with the transition? This would require a deeper study of the system from the perspective of students, teachers, parents and CBSE officials. Students are used to rote learning methods, but with changing evaluation methods and (hopefully) teaching methods, are students geared up/oriented to change their study habits? Does the new system meet the original goals of evaluation?

_ How do teachers go about evaluation? What is the process? Do they have the time and resources to do justice to the evaluation that is expected of them?

What follows next is interviews with CBSE Officials and Parents before scenarios can be built.